In an astounding turn of events, cabinet minister and arch leaver Michael Gove has declared that, this Christmas, he is renouncing his opposition to the UK’s membership of the EU and is embracing the remain cause, even endorsing calls for a second referendum. But what lies behind this extraordinary development? According to sources close to the Environment Secretary, his sudden conversion to being pro-EU came after a number of ghostly experiences culminating in a vision of Britain suffering a far from Happy Brexmas this year. “Apparently, it started the other day as he was leaving Number Ten after a cabinet meeting,” Jonty Bloomers, a one time aide to Gove told the Daily Norks. “As the front door closed behind him, the door knocker seemed to take on the likeness of former Prime Minister David Cameron – who moaned and warned Gove that he would, that night be visited by three spirits! Obviously, he was left completely unnerved – everyone thought Cameron had died years ago!” Bloomer claims that, as predicted by the spectral Cameron, Gove spent that night beset by ghosts, who showed him visions of Bbrexit past, present and future. “It was a terrifying experience, particularly the visions of Brexit future,” reveals Bloomers. “Its utter bleakness – endless queues for food banks, people dying for want of medicines, thirty mile tailbacks from the customs at Dover – left him questioning his whole belief system!”

The first of these visitations was from the Ghost of Brexit Past. “Apparently he was this shambolic, bumbling fat buffoon, who bore more than a passing resemblance to Boris Johnson,” says Bloomers, who claims to have had the whole story related to him by a friend of Gove’s wife’s hairdresser. “He proceeded to show Gove what Brexit could have been, if only the ‘remoaners’ hadn’t sabotaged it.” The vision he brought was of an idyllic England, basking in an endless summer, free of immigrants, crazy European judges and bizarre rules imposed by Brussels. “It was a land where bananas could be as bent as they liked, all your neighbours were white and everyone lived in prosperity,” muses Bloomers. “With Britain free from the shackles of Europe, the former colonies have returned to the fold and we once again lie at the heart of happy Empire of nations.” Tempting though this vision was for Gove, it was quickly swept aside, destroyed by the division and rancour spread by the losing remain supporters in the wake of their referendum defeat. “After the ghost left, tripping over the doorstep as he left, Gove had time to reflect,” says Bloomers. “He realised that the vision of Brexit past spun to him was nothing more than a fantasy, completely undeliverable in real life.”

The Environment Secretary next found himself accosted by the Ghost of Brexit Present, who took the form of Prime Minister Theresa May. “But it was a Theresa May grey and dawn, weighed down by the terrible burden of enacting a policy she never truly believed in,” explains Bloomers. “She gave him a vision of a Britain riven with division over Brexit, a Britain with a multitude of factions, all advocating their own competing Brexits.” Brexit present turned out to be a time of conflict, with Tory MP fighting Tory MP, families resorting to violence as they argued over Brexit. “Worst of all, it was a Britain preparing for a desultory Christmas, or Brexmas to be accurate – the shops bare because of hoarding by those who feared the consequences of a No Deal Brexit,” says Bloomers. “Years of austerity followed by pre Brexit hoarding had left people exhausted and unwilling and unable to spend on the festive season. Their misery was made worse by the knowledge that this would be the last pre-Brexit Christmas – post-Brexit Santa, being German, would be denied free movement from the EU, making it impossible for him to deliver presents. Likewise, Christmas tress, being of European origin, would be banned.” After the Ghost of Brexit Present left, following a vote of no confidence, a shocked Gove was left to ponder on what he had seen, wondering whether he might be the man to heal the rifts caused by Brexit.

His musings were rudely interrupted by the sudden appearance of the Ghost of Brexit Future, in the form of a cackling David Davies. “He showed Gove a deeply disturbing vision of a future Britain after a No Deal Brexit,” says Bloomers. “It was a dull and grey land, with children sick because of the shortages of medicines, people fighting over packets of Bisto in the street and ‘Brexit Wardens’ prowling around, cracking down on anyone suspected of dealing in smuggled goods of EU origin.” A Britain, in fact, which bore a striking resemblance to wartime Britain: all rationing and tin hats, air raid sirens constantly sounding to warn of new delays to food deliveries or suspected incursions from immigrants. “Apparently Gove even saw poor Jacob Rees Mogg, reduced to selling himself on the street in exchange for a battered tin of baked beans,” laments Bloomers. “Moreover, with the economy knackered and public spending slashed, the armed forces had been disbanded and the Home Guard re-instituted. There were hundreds of pensioners armed with carving knives taped to broom handles lining our coast lines, prepared to defend Britain from invading hordes of illegal immigrants trying to come ashore in inflatable boats.” Terrified by what he had seen, Gove apparently decided that such a scenario must never come to pass. “That’s when he decided that to completely change direction and embrace the idea of ‘No Brexit at All’ if it might save Britain,” says Bloomers. “He realised that the people must be allowed to choose their own fates in a second referendum!”

Many political commentators have cast doubt on Bloomers’ story, claiming that Gove’s supposed conversion is simply another cynical ploy as he once more tries to position himself for a Tory leadership bid. “He’s come to realise what a disaster a No Deal Brexit promises to be and needs to disassociate himself from it,” opines Fred Cacks, political editor of the Sunday Bystander. “So he’s come up with all this Dickensian bollocks to try and reposition himself as Britain’s saviour, while simultaneously dissing his fellow Brexit architects Johnson and Davies and the current Tory leader, Theresa May.” Others have suggested that his motivation is merely one of survival. “What Bloomers hasn’t said is that, apparently, in that vision of Brexit Future, Gove saw his own grave,” says Labour back bencher and ardent remainer Paul Draws. “The ghost told him that he and the other arch Brexiteers had found themselves swinging from lampposts, lynched by angry mobs, infuriated by the shortages of food and medical supplies – not to mention the fact that they were having to pay for visas to visit EU countries post-Brexit.”